Thursday, February 7, 2013

Book Tour for Highland Quest by BJ Scott (Review & GIVEAWAY)


Historical reads take us away from the stresses of daily living and sweep us into the rollicking past where every emotion was heightened. BJ Scott is here today with her newest release, Highland Quest, which introduces us to a slew of sexy Scots.  So keeping reading to learn about book series, along with my take on this book, as well as an awesome giveaway!

Why are people drawn to series?
I posed this question on a blog in the past, when I was deciding if I should write my sequel to Highland Legacy right away or finish another Scottish historical I had started that was not related to the first book. I asked on average if the reader would rather read a sequel to a book they liked or something by the author on an entirely different topic. While the response was mixed, the majority said that they enjoyed reading a sequel or series of books about a given family/clan or series of events. When asked why they gave me the following answer.
The most common response was that they if they loved the first book, they usually didn’t want the book to end, wanted to know more about the other characters in the book, wanted the story to continue. They have gotten to know the characters,  fell into the sub-plots or develop a particular connection to one or more of the secondary characters. This to me was an interesting answer and one authors need to keep in mind when writing a novel they think might become a series. In my book Highland Legacy, the three brothers were all very different from each other, but shared a bond of fierce loyalty to family and country. The story focused on the hero and heroin in the book, but I got many requests to continue the story so they could find out what happened to Bryce and Fallon, or if Alasdair would ever soften his heart and find love. This laid the groundwork for the next two books, Highland Quest (my current release) and Highland Homecoming ( a work still in progress) Knowing my readers liked the first book and wanted more of the Fraser brothers’ saga gave me a good reason to write the series.
When I wrote the first book, I had a series in mind, but wrote it in such a way it could stand alone.  Highland Quest was written the same way. While it is a continuation of Highland Legacy, a reader could pick it up, not read the first book and not feel lost. They could also read the first book after the second and still enjoy the story. I did this by adding just enough back-story to Highland Quest to let the reader know who the returning characters are and how they play a role in the second book, without giving too much away from the first book. I think the key to writing a good series is to make it so a person can pick any book in the series and read them in any order they desire.
Fans of historical romance, any romance for that matter, who fall in love with the characters in a book, typically want more. If they found a satisfying escape from the stress of the real world in a time they loved, with characters they can relate to, it stands to reason they’ll want more. The onus now falls on the author to write a sequel or series that is as good and if possible, even better than the first book. Some might be tempted to write a quick sequel just to keep the interest going and to make more money off an already captive audience. But don’t sell yourself, your book or your reader short. Do everything you can to make the sequel even more memorable and more enjoyable and you will have fans for life.

No longer content in the shadows of his older brothers and on a quest to find his destiny, Bryce Fraser's chosen path is fraught with danger, passion, and decisions. Can his unspoken love for spirited, beguiling Fallon be triumphant in a time of war and uncertainty, or will they both fall prey to the devious plans of a traitorous laird from a rival clan?

EXCERPT:

Bryce closed the gap between them. She heard his footsteps, felt his warm breath on the back of her neck as he spoke, but didn’t turn around.
“Please dinna be angry with me, Fallon. I could not bear to think you held me any ill will. This is for the best.” He gently touched her shoulder.
“Dinna leave.” She dropped the sack and whipped around to face him, the words escaping before she could stop them. “Why must you go? Why must you risk your life?”
“You know why.” He yanked her against his chest and captured her mouth.
But this time she did not fight his advances. She wrapped her arms around his neck, responding with equal enthusiasm to his kiss. Her lips parted, welcoming the sweep of his tongue. As he deepened the exploration, her knees buckled, and she clung to his tunic as if her life depended on it.
Unshed tears stung her eyes, but she managed to blink them away. This might be the last time they would see each other and she suddenly found herself wanting a memory that would last forever. What she was about to ask was wrong, and could only lead to heartache. While she knew she should fight temptation with her last breath, she was only human.
“Join with me, Bryce,” she whispered against his lips.

MY IMPRESSIONS OF THE BOOK:

BJ Scott's latest tale from Scotland, Highland Quest, is a heartpounding ride from beginning to end with one battle after another to keep the consequences of life and death close at hand.  As the youngest brother in his clan, Bryce is known for acting first and thinking later.  He wants to make something of himself separate from his brothers which leads to a vow he refuses to break no matter how much it hurts his heart and soul.  And his heart and soul has suddenly become Fallon, a woman thought to be cursed because of her visions of future deaths.  She too has never felt as though she measured up.  Almost everyone has kept themselves away from her and she has determined to remain alone. But with the heated looks and sense of belonging she feels around Bryce she starts to fight to change his mind about their future.

Bryce is honorable but refuses to give into the love Fallon is more than willing to give him.  He's bullheaded when it comes to matters of the heart and guilt from a traumatic teenage event continues to hold him back.  Fallon is strong-willed and willing to fight for what she wants. She's not your typical historical heroine as she stands her ground with unexpected strength time and again.  These two people who have always felt loss are perfect together and their long and arduous journey made for a very satisfying HEA.

There were a few tender moments early on in the story between Fallon and Bryce and one or two steamy encounters later on, but the majority of the book revolves around battle scenes and planning for battle. With so many soldiers coming and going though it's hard to keep track of them all.  Some of the language throughout the book felt a bit stilted too, and combined with these lengthy battle scenes, there were times the story dragged just a bit.  This didn't detract from my overall enjoyment of the story, nor did I feel lost because I hadn't read the previous installment.  As the second book in what promises to be a satisfying series it has me greatly anticipating what comes next for this sexy family of Scotsmen.

My rating for this is a B.

*I received this book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion.

BUY AT:  AMAZON  |  SOUL MATE PUBLISHING  |  BN  |  KOBO

AUTHOR INFO:

With a passion for historical romance, history in general, and anything Celtic, B.J. always has an exciting work in progress. Each story offers a blend of romance, adventure, suspense, and, where appropriate, a dab of comic relief. Carefully researched historical facts are woven into each manuscript, providing a backdrop from which steamy romance, gripping plots, and vivid characters—dashing alpha heroes and resourceful, beguiling heroines you can’t help but admire—spring to life. A member of RWA, World Romance Writers, Celtic Hearts Romance Writers, and Savvy Authors, B.J. also writes contemporary, paranormal, time travel, and romantic suspense.
C.S. Lewis first captivated B. J.’s imagination in the fourth grade, and her desire to write sprang from there. Following a career in nursing and child and youth work, B.J. married her knight-in-shining-armor, and he whisked her away to his castle by the sea. In reality, they share theircentury-old home in a small Canadian town on the shore of Lake Erie with three dogs and a cat. When she is not working at her childcare job, on her small business, or writing, you will find her reading, camping, or antique hunting.

https://www.facebook.com/authorbjscott
http://www.authorbjscott.com/
http://authorbjscott.wordpress.com/

**********GIVEAWAY**********

The author will award gifts of swag (including a canvas tote bag, a mouse pad, a pen, book thong, bookmark, can cooler, magnet, and key chain -- US/Canada only) to randomly drawn commenters from this tour and her Virtual Book Tour, and a grand prize of one $50 Amazon GC to one randomly drawn commenter from this tour and her Super Book Blast.

-To be entered, leave a comment, along with your email addy.
-Winners will be chosen randomly from all comments made throughout the tour, so the more you comment the greater your chances of winning.  A list of all participating blogs can be found here.
-Giveaway ends at 11:59 PM CST on 2/15.

23 comments:

  1. A series lets us fall in love with a time or world or characters again & again.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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    1. So true, Mary. Thanks for dropping by.

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  2. Thank you for hosting me on your blog. I appreciate this chance to share tbe second book in my series, Highland Quest with, you and your visitors.

    **As mentioned in my post, while paet of a series, this book was also written to standalone so you can read it first and not be lost :)

    Highland Legacy, the first book in the series is available in print and e-book. The third book, Hihghland Homecoming isto be released this summer.**

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  3. I love journals but mostly do my writing on my computer. How about you, are you still using a paper notebook for notes or writing stories down?

    galaschick78 at gmail dot com

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    Replies
    1. I do both. While the bulk is done on computer, I jot down my ideas and plot out my books on paper. The beauty of a pad and pen being that if an idea comes to you, or a great line of dialogue, you can write it down. You don't always have a computer handy ;)

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  4. Great review. I love a series because it's like seeing old friends again.

    Kit3247(at)aol(dot)com

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    1. Series tend to be very popular. Thanks for dropping by ;)

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  5. Hi,
    could you imagine to turn your book in an audiobook as well?

    shadowrunner1987(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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    Replies
    1. Amazon does offer my books in audio format if you request it. Or so it says on the product details ;)

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  6. I love series. When I finish a good book, it makes me happy knowing I can pick up the next one.

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    1. Well you have two for this series to get you started and a third on the way ;)
      Could be a fourth but not sure. Three for sure ;)

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  7. Great post and review. I'm partial to those highlanders as once in another life I was engaged to a hunky Scotsman myself, I still smile when I hear a Scotsman speak. Sounds like this is a good series to put on my wish list.

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    1. Love a Scottish accent. While I am Canadian born and raised, by ancestry is Scottish, Irish and English so have a fondness for all things related. I hope you get a chance to read the books and that you enjoy them.

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  8. Very nice review about the characters.

    bn100candg(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  9. Thanks for the chance to win!
    Sounds like a great read!!
    natasha_donohoo_8 at hotmail dot com

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  10. This looks really good! Thanks for the great giveaway! lcminer at windstream dot net

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Leslie. I usually try to go back to the blogs and check to make sure I didn't miss anyone. If you get the chance to read the books, I hope you enjoy them.

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  11. Great excerpt. Would love to read the book. :)
    Thanks for the giveaway too. Hope this gets a lot of exposure.
    anne.j2 (at) gmail.com

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    1. Hi Anne
      just dropping in to all my blog tour hosts to make sure I got everyone for the draw and to thank them for taking the time to comment.
      I hope you get a chance to read the books in my series. As mentioned this is book 2 but they can be read in any order

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  12. Hi BJ,

    I was interest in the auio aspect.IS it downloaded rather like a long song file you can put on your iPod. Thanks.
    Happy Valentine's Day.

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    Replies
    1. I honestly do not know how the audio works, just that it is available from Amazon in Audio format for those who prefer to listen to a book rather than read it.

      Thank you for stopping by and hope you had a great valentine day too

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